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UK Sport launches Environmental Sustainability Strategy

UK Sport launches Environmental Sustainability Strategy

“We must use the voice, influence and platform of high-performance sport to advocate for action on environmental sustainability and inspire others to act and make a difference.”

This was the statement made by UK Sport Chief Executive Sally Munda when UK sport revealed its Enviornmental Sustainability Strategy earlier this year.

Their plan is an ambitious one.

UK Sport has a goal for high-performance sport to have a net positive impact on the environment by 2040, as well as reducing the negative environmental impact of UK Sport’s own activities and operations, to achieve net zero by 2030.

Sally Munday said: “Climate change is impacting all of us. We have seen tracks and pitches are being flooded and extreme heat is impacting athletes, their training and competitions.

“A failure to take action now is not only a threat to the long-term relevance and appeal of high-performance sport, but it also threatens the existence of high-performance sport itself in the future.

“Without urgent action, our Team of Tomorrow is under threat.

“UK Sport is determined to reduce the impact of our own activities and operations, targeting net zero by 2030, as well as driving action and progress on sustainability across high-performance sport.

“Our goal is for British Olympic and Paralympic sport together with major sporting events that we host in the UK to have a net positive impact on the environment by 2040.

“Sport has the power to unite people across borders and inspire positive change.”

The strategy, which is available here, covers the period 2023-2025 and marks the first step in ensuring that the next generation of champions — the Team of Tomorrow — continue to deliver more extraordinary sporting moments.

Alongside specific action and targets, the strategy also highlights the wider influence of high-performance sport and the important role that sport can play in advocating for environmental sustainability and inspiring positive change across society.

Warning that a lack of action to tackle climate change represents a significant threat to the future of our planet, as well as the long-term relevance and even existence of high-performance sport itself, key priorities outlined in the strategy include:

  • A requirement for national governing bodies to analyse their environmental impacts and develop an Environmental Sustainability Action Plan by the end of March 2025, aligned with the UN Sports for Climate Action Framework;
  • Using the voice, influence and platform of high-performance sport to advocate for environmental sustainability and inspire positive change;
  • Incorporate action on environmental sustainability into the bidding, hosting and delivery of major events;
  • Responsible procurement of goods and services to reduce negative environmental impacts;
  • Continued annual reporting of environmental impacts, increasing the range of sustainability measures reported on. A report outlining UK Sport’s carbon emissions 2021/22 is available here.

You can read more about UK Sport’s Environmental Sustainability Strategy here.

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